The Digitalization of Energy

The promise of digitalization in energy will be transformative

We are on the cusp of a new digital era in energy. Digital technology though has been involved in the energy system for decades.

What is new, is the pace of digitalization occurring through technological innovation, providing solutions that enable the energy system to be transformed? It is not any more islands of data it is moving towards entire energy systems being connected up and driving energy intelligence.

Digitalization across the energy landscape is determining the system-wide changes of connectivity; it is linking, monitoring, aggregating, and controlling assets to cause a fundamental “blurring” between who supplies and who consumes energy.

The old paradigm of central grids will undoubtedly continue to provide the energy infrastructure backbone and keep balancing the electricity transmission network, but there will be significant differences at the local level (final point of supply) to trade energy through different grid edge designs and services. The level of management and effectiveness needs digitalization as its enabler.

The energy systems of today are becoming highly complex. At present 90% of the distribution grids are dumb today and they urgently require to become intellient.

Distributed energy has enourmous potential to grow and the digitalization of the entire energy system will require connecting up so it can drive efficiences, give greater awareness and protection and quarentee power quality from a growing variety of energy generation sources.

Cross-cutting risks of Digitalization

As we rely increasingly on digital solutions, we will become more vulnerable to digital threats, and we need to build more significant protection measures built into our energy systems. We need a robust, comprehensive digital resistance to prevent or reduce cyber-attacks or the growing effects of geomagnetic storms that can effectively “knock out” our energy systems.

We need to consider the privacy and data ownership questions increasingly, that balance for the benefit with the “trading off.”

Finally, we will continue to go through such an upheaval in the energy sectors, in job and skill changes. Whole work patterns, tasks, and requirements needed to effectively manage the new energy system will have significant disruption and radically alter how we undertake its management.

Digitalization Of Energy 

As digital becomes increasingly persuasive and part of our lives, we will undergo a real change in how we view our energy consumption and contribution to the system. In many ways, digitally is offering us an incomplete or undefinable future, in energy, in our overall reliance on digitalization solutions.

The goal needs to be that the digital technologies we introduce need to help us become more connected, intelligent, efficient, by having, resilience, reliability, and sustainability built into the energy system we are designing. Energy is changing significantly; we are all becoming plugged into a progressively digitally renewable world.

Author: @paul4innovating

A transition advocate for innovation, ecosystems, and digitalization for the energy and IIoT systems

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